Cheesy Meatball Lasagna

29 Oct

Sometimes I think of a recipe and it won’t leave my mind. It’s in my mind all day. While I’m driving to work, I’m thinking about my grocery list. During lunch, I’m dreaming of dinner.  At the gym, I’m trying to burn extra calories because I know what I’ll be eating later. Seriously, I think I have a one track mind for food.

I’m not sure what the weather temperatures are like in other cities, but in Chicago, last Thursday night it dropped 20 degrees in less than 2 hours. I’m pretty sure we’ve seen the last of 70 degree days until 2013. Kind of sad, but I think I’ll get over it. I’m ready for comfort food which warms me up and hugs me from the inside… things like this Cheesy Meatball Lasagna.

This is probably the 2nd time in my life I’ve made a lasagna…but I knew I wanted to do something a little different. Enter Smoked Gouda Cheese. I put it in the meatballs and layered shreds of it throughout the lasagna. I think it gave the lasagna such a O.M.G. quality. I’m thinking I might need to add Smoked Gouda to everything I make. It truly has the effect of making everything that’s already awesome even better.

My only complaint is it took sometime to put together and cook to cheesy perfection in the oven. One of my favorite things to say is, “Drink some wine to kill the time.”  Trust me, I had a big pour…but I was still checking the timer every 10 minutes to see how much longer I had to wait. It was total torture.

But I was rewarded with this delicious dinner. Oh so totally worth it.

This lasagna was meaty, extra cheesy, smoky and has a deliciously easy tomato sauce with fresh basil. I’d make this dish for anyone. Well, anyone who loves meat and isn’t lactose intolerant.

So go ahead, day-dream about this lasagna and drink some wine while time stands still.. I mean while it’s cooking in the oven. 🙂

Cheesy Meatball Lasagna, inspired by Family Circle


  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 lb Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1/2 cup smoked gouda cheese, grated
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


  • 12 traditional lasagna noodles
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 can (28 oz) fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (28 oz) fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 container (15 oz) ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 bag (8 oz) shredded mozzarella
  • 1 cup smoked gouda cheese, grated


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Make Meatballs. In a large bowl, combine ground beef, sausage, bread crumbs, egg, milk, and cheese.  I used a medium-sized cookie/ice cream scooper to shape meatballs. You can also use your hands. Size of the meatball should be around 1 tablespoon.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the meatballs and cook for 5 minutes, shaking pan to turn meatballs while maintaining their shape. Remove to a plate and repeat with remaining meatballs. Reserve drippings in pan. (FYI – Meatballs don’t need to be cooked all the way through.)
  3. Meanwhile, to make Lasagna, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boiling. Add noodles, 1 at a time, and cook for 10 minutes. Drain and rinse with cool water.
  4. Place skillet from meatballs over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes. Add garlic; cook 1 minute. Stir in both crushed and diced tomatoes. Simmer 15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in half the chopped basil. Set aside 3/4 cup of the sauce.
  5. In a medium bowl, blend ricotta, remaining basil, the egg and 2 tbsp of the Parmesan.
  6. Begin layering: Spread 1 cup of tomato sauce in bottom of a 13 x 9 2 inch baking dish. Top with 4 noodles, overlapping. Scatter half the meatballs over noodles. Pour half the remaining tomato sauce over meatballs. Top with 4 more noodles and spread with ricotta mixture and half of the mozzarella and smoked gouda cheese. Add remaining meatballs. Pour remaining tomato sauce over meatballs. Top with final 4 noodles. Spread with reserved 3/4 cup sauce. Top with remaining mozzarella, smoked gouda and remaining 2 tbsp Parmesan.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes until bubbly and slightly browned. Let stand 15 to 20 minutes before serving.

19 Responses to “Cheesy Meatball Lasagna”

  1. Sarah October 29, 2012 at 7:44 pm #

    FInding your blog for the first time! I am a fellow food lover – what I see here looks great! What a lucky husband you have 🙂 I didn’t start cooking “real” food until after we had our first baby…before then, I’m not sure what we survived on! Looking foward to seeing more!

    • Sarah October 29, 2012 at 7:47 pm #

      I forgot something: I see that you are in the Midwest! If you are interested in connecting with other bloggers in your area – there is a private facebook page for us to all connect!!/groups/366045866763251/.

      • Miss Tasty October 29, 2012 at 7:53 pm #

        Sarah, thank you so much for stopping by! I’d love to join your group!! I just attend an Online Blog Conference and I was shocked there weren’t many Midwest Peeps. I’ve been looking for a group to link up with, esp since I’m still pretty new to blogging. Let me know what info you need to invite me to the group. MANY THANKS!!

  2. organizedisland October 29, 2012 at 9:39 pm #

    Hello! I have not tried using gouda in lasagne. What a great idea! It was nice meeting you at Online Blog Con 🙂

  3. Rachel @ I Love My Disorganized Life October 29, 2012 at 10:08 pm #

    Can I just say that I am so jealous you lived in Italy?! {although I realize you were just 3 when you left, but STILL!} And I love, love , love Italian food. Probably because I’m 1/2 Italian and grew up eating it 2 times a week! I have been making the same lasagna recipe {my mom’s} FOREVER and it never occurred to me to switch up the cheese! This looks so saucy rich. Like it would really stick to your bones. Gotta have it! With a glass of red wine, of course.

    • Rachel @ I Love My Disorganized Life October 29, 2012 at 10:13 pm #

      OK, HUGE error on my part! So many blogs…so little room in my head…
      I beg forgiveness in regards to the error I made regarding your childhood! But EVERYTHING else I said was TOTALLY TRUE! Forgive?

      • Miss Tasty October 30, 2012 at 8:33 am #

        LOL Rachel! No big deal! I totally know what you mean about blog overload. I’m experiencing that too. 🙂

  4. Bill October 30, 2012 at 7:06 am #

    This REALLY looks good and even though it’s only 8 AM here in FL my mouth is watering and my stomach is growling.

  5. Anjena @ Footwear Coupons October 30, 2012 at 10:56 am #

    First of all thanks for sharing your stuff…. It’s really look so amazing to me… honestly speaking that you have a lucky husband 🙂 and I’m quite jealous on you. Thanks again !!

  6. Jocelyn @BruCrew Life October 30, 2012 at 11:08 am #

    Now that looks like one fine lasagna! What a great idea to change out the cheese for a smokier flavor. And meatballs? That is just a fun idea. I’m loving this whole pan of goodness!!!

  7. Karly Campbell October 30, 2012 at 10:32 pm #

    Woah. I can never get enough cheese. Looks like we’re soul mates in that department!

    • Miss Tasty October 31, 2012 at 9:57 am #

      Cheesy Soul Mates – I like it!

  8. HungryLittleGirl October 31, 2012 at 5:50 pm #

    One word: amazing!
    I would love to have you share this (or any other recipes of yours) at Wednesday Extravaganza – my Foodie link party, and maybe win a lifetime feature on my Wall of Fame! Here is the link:

    I can’t wait to see you there!

  9. Kathryn Griffin November 3, 2012 at 10:32 am #

    Oh, sweet, Lord! This looks and sounds so good! My hips will not love you for this, but my mouth will! Thank you for sharing. Would love it if you would share this at my Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House which goes live at 8am CST on Monday. Hope to see you at the bash! Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  10. Jamie @ Love Bakes Good Cakes November 5, 2012 at 8:52 pm #

    This sounds like such a great dish! Thank you for sharing at All my Bloggy Friends. I’m looking forward to seeing what you share this week! 🙂

  11. Julie (@JuliesEatsTreat) November 6, 2012 at 8:18 am #

    I’m neither lactose intolerant and I love meat so I’d gladly share a glass of wine with you while we wait for this lovely dish to bake!

  12. Michelle Day November 6, 2012 at 5:07 pm #

    What an amazing looking lasagna! I’ve never tried meatballs in mine but I will now 🙂 Thanks so much for linking up to Creative Thursday. Can’t wait to see what you share this week! Have a wonderful week.


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